Theater archives

Looking Up: A Romance With Trapeze


Writer-performer Carla Cantrelle’s sappy two-hander about why love is like a trapeze begins with Wendy, an aerialist who’s left the circus to perform at a nightclub. Trouble is, she’s spent so much of her life learning to fly that, when it comes to relationships, she finds it tough to “hang on.” Enter Jack (Bryant Mason), a bartender at the nightclub who happens to know a lot about rope, giving the two an excuse to have boring, overly symbolic conversations about knots and nets. For instance, when Jack says he likes the figure-eight knot, Wendy reads between the lines: “Simple. Practical. Easy to get out of.” In other words, Jack is afraid of commitment. The rest of the play features monologues and conversations laden with trapeze metaphors (safety nets, catching your partner, letting go)—dialogue about their dysfunctional pasts and whether they can survive the “risky venture” of love. Despite the thrill of seeing Cantrelle expertly perform tricks on the trapeze, the play, presented by Traveling Light Productions, needs a more subtle approach to storytelling to, er, get it off the ground.